Liverpudlian four-piece indie-pop band The Night Café are back with a four track EP ‘For Better Days’. The band began this new musical era by releasing the surprise single ‘Isn’t’, their first material since the 2019 debut album ‘0151’ (a reference to the Liverpool area code). Frontman and lead songwriter Sean Martin has spoken about the project stating:
‘For Better Days’ is what it says on the tin. This last year has been a tough one so we were making rammers to cheer us up to be hopeful for the better days to come.”
The four tracks, which make up this EP, offer us more of the laidback and soft guitar driven indie-pop that the band came to be known for on ‘0151’. The Jangly guitar riffs and soft drums which make up the first track ‘Isn’t’contrast with the melancholy subject matter with Sean Martin describing the track as:
‘capturing the feeling of loss/betrayal in a relationship. Basically just a bad relationship where both people end up disliking each other but the feeling of love is still hard to lose. ‘To go from love is so absurd, it pains me still to say that word, but I love you still’.
The second track ‘Think It Over’ begins with a beautiful piano solo before characteristically tranquil but joyful guitars and drums and Martin’s laidback vocals kick in, whilst the lyrics describe a person who is questioning the direction their life is taking. The band have also released a self-directed video along with this track. The third and fourth tracks ‘Up All Night’ and ‘What’s It Feel Like?’ continue the theme of melancholy yet cheerful love songs, with the latter boasting a catchy chorus which is sure to make it a crowd favourite at the bands postponed 2022 UK tour.
Overall, the EP is a perfect showcase of Martin’s ability to “hide moody lyrics under happy guitars”, describing relationship problems to a soundtrack of chilled indie-pop. However, the band have described this project as a “bridge to a different sound” between their debut and future second long-play release, in which they are hoping to shift away from their signature sound of guitar focused indie pop and romantic lyrics towards profounder subject matters. With continued support from big names, such as fellow Scousers The Wombats and with this intriguing shift in sound approaching, The Night Café remain an integral and exciting act on the UK indie-pop scene.
Words: Leila McGrorty